New York is my happy place. It feels like home. It brings me so much comfort, fills my heart, and its where I feel I thrive. I honestly can’t wrap my mind around the fact I’ve been here for nearly 4 months already.
Ever since I left the city in May 2016, I was missing it. Honestly, probably not a day went by that I didn’t think about being here. But to be honest, coming to New York this year, I was kind of running away. I had been feeling unfulfilled and stagnant in my life in Victoria and felt that I needed a big change. Last year, coming here changed everything. It turned my world upside down, I fell so in love with life, felt more at home than ever, and came out feeling more myself. So I have to admit, I expected everything to change as soon as I got here in February. I had been depressed at home and thought getting out of my environment and coming to the city would flip it all around again. It happened once, why not again right?
Spoiler: running away doesn’t fix everything. Removing myself from my surroundings only made me realize that it wasn’t just that. It wasn’t that simple. In reality I was more alone with less clutter, belongings, and commitments, forcing me to dig deep and figure out why I was unhappy and why life felt so stagnant. For a while, I distracted myself so that I wouldn’t have to confront those thoughts. But eventually I realized that things weren’t going to get better unless I put the work in. It took me looking into flights home, a couple little breakdowns, and a lot of journaling to realize what was going on.
I was living in New York but wasn’t fully here. I wasted a lot of my time worrying and being afraid of all that I was leaving behind, questioning what I was doing, and doubting all my decisions.
This also helped me realize that I’m exactly where I need to be.
One evening, wandering around the streets of Manhattan with no destination or game plan, it really hit me. Everything was exactly as it should be. For me, this is a place of healing, learning, and figuring out how to turn inward for answers. It has reminded me of all that I love in life, all that I’m grateful for, and how privileged I am to experience this, let alone for a second time. It’s kind of funny that it’s the busiest, loudest, and most crowded city that has helped me learn to slow down, be mindful, and thrive on my own.
Being in New York has helped me be comfortably myself and comfortably by myself. I am able to enjoy my own company and seeing all the perks in being on my own.
Along with that, New York has allowed me to meet so many human beans that I needed in my life. They’ve all taught me different things and have impacted me uniquely. I think that’s what I love most about being here. Coming back was a great reunion with some familiar faces that my heart had been missing. It has also been filled with new souls that I’m so lucky to have connected with.
There is just so much life and passion here. everyone is chasing different dreams and trying to achieve their goals. they’re hustling through their lives pursuing so many different things. meeting people from so many walks of life and in so many different industries is incredible and eye opening. lately I’ve been so full of passion and inspiration that it’s actually a little overwhelming. I have so many ideas but just haven’t figured out how to bring them to life.
I just feel so excited about everything again and enthusiastic about what’s to come. It’s been a slow and long process.
New York, you’ve helped prepare me to embrace the present and really cherish living in the moment. You’ve helped me fully embody myself and flow through life with creative fluidity. You’ve made me realize my power and all that I am capable of if I just let go of fear and judgment. I hold myself back more than anything else, but I am done. I am ready to see what I can do when I really believe. New York, you are my sanctuary. You’ve surrounded me with love, creativity, and support in the form of unique human beings that so graciously interweaved themselves into my life.
Everything is in constant motion. I am allowing myself to flow with all of the waves of life – joy, depression, love, loss, confusion – instead of letting it overcome me. I am aware of my negative emotions, I allow myself to feel them, but know they are not forever and they do not define me.
Last year, as I left the city, I felt like I was leaving a bit of me behind. I sniffled and cried in the back of an Uber the whole way to the airport and felt as if my heart was breaking. I knew I’d be back, but it was so hard to say goodbye to my dream city that quickly became home. Also, I had no idea how getting back to Victoria would affect me, I was terrified of falling back into the dark place I was in before leaving. This year, albeit tough, I am looking forward to heading back. New York was everything I needed and more. Exciting things are lined up for me back in Victoria and I’m excited to put into motion all of the ideas that have been swirling around in my head.
Returning back to Canada, I am not a whole new person, but I am more myself. Releasing fears, judgments, self-restrictions allows me to more fully embody myself. I’m still going to have to deal with all my struggles, but I am learning and I am healing.
Thank you so much for reading, my beautiful friends. I’m so grateful for your love, support, and just the space you allow me to take in your life. It melts my heart and makes me feel all warm and fuzzy. A lot of this was written as I sat in a coffee shop and just allowed myself to write and really let the words flow out of me. The rest of it was written sleepily from bed, which is one of my favourite times to write as it allows me to let my guard down and write almost mindlessly. I thought I’d share it in case you can relate, so you know you are not alone ❤️